Picture: Numsa Media.

JOHANNESBURG - Members of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) at Scaw Metals in Germiston, Gauteng, on Monday went on strike after one of the company's shareholders allegedly physically assaulted a worker.

Numsa said that one of its members was assaulted on Friday, for using a cell phone while on duty.

“This is not the first time that [the shareholder] has abused workers. In June, this year he allegedly physically assaulted a female worker. We demanded his removal and our demands were ignored. Now he has assaulted another worker and this has provoked our members into going on strike," Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim said.

He said the union condemned the shareholder's brutality towards its members, adding that the management of Scaw Metals had not acted decisively in the matter.

Numsa has called for the shareholder to be suspended immediately and for an investigation into this and other incidents. 

“We know of several other incidents where he is alleged to have been involved. Furthermore, a criminal case has been opened with the South African Police Services (SAPS) in Elsburg, Germiston,” Jim said.

"We are also meeting with management to deal with this issue and to resolve the strike."

The company was not immediately available for comment.

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African News Agency (ANA)